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Advocacy News

ADA Asks HHS Office of Civil Rights to Delay Implementation of Law

July 19, 2016

The Association has asked the Department of Health and Human Services' Office of Civil Rights for an extension of the implementation deadlines for the recently released final rule issued under Sec. 1557 of the Affordable Care Act, which prohibits discrimination in health care on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability and sex, including discrimination based on pregnancy, gender identity and sex stereotyping.

The rule, which was implemented July 18, applies to health care providers who receive certain funds through HHS, including Medicaid and the Children's Health Insurance Program. It does not apply to providers who only receive reimbursement under Medicare Part B, but as of July 18 the agency had not clarified whether the rule applies to dentists who receive reimbursement under Medicare Part C, also known as Medicare Advantage.

In a letter to Jocelyn Samuels, OCR director, ADA President Carol Gomez Summerhays and Executive Director Kathleen T. O'Loughlin urged the agency to delay the enforcement date so that dentists will have sufficient time to meet the requirements.